One of the dominant issues under discussion is the digital transformation of organisations and society, which is receiving great interest from industry and academia. The term is, unfortunately, rather ill-defined yet seems to encompass just about any organisational intervention. As an umbrella term or conceptual clearing, it offers an anchor point from which a diverse community of academics and practitioners can seek to define more precise meaning. The extensive digitising of previously analogue data and processes and the subsequent socio-technical digitalisation of interdependencies within and between organisations are laying the ground for more significant redefinitions of the operating logic of supply and demand relationships, and as a result, the digital transformation of organisations and entire industries. 

The course will exercise the covered material from the main Information Systems and Management journals through group work, plenary presentations and discussions, as well as through a small individual argumentative essay based on the provided readings. The primary aim is to provide a solid academic grounding stimulating further research into the subject matter where the students relate the readings to their doctoral projects. 

This doctoral course aims to identify and discuss invariant aspects of this phenomenon by anchoring it within the extant academic debate within the areas of digitalisation, platforms, digital infrastructures and -ecosystems, and rights-sensitive infrastructures, such as blockchain and other distributed ledgers technologies. 

The course will, based on the significant research experience of the course leader, ask questions, such as: How can digitalisation be defined, and how is digital innovation a fundamental departure from previous generations of technological change? What are the growth and innovation dynamics of digital platforms, and how can we conceptualise their wider role in the reshaping of organisations and markets? How can we characterise the variety of definitions of ecosystems, and how do these relate to digital platforms and -infrastructures? Why are rights-based digital infrastructures, for example, based on blockchain and other distributed ledger technologies, important elements in the reordering of inter-organisational interdependencies and digital markets?

Day 1

  • Introduction
  • Defining digitalisation and framing digital transformation
  • Platform origins
  • Platform typologies
  • Innovation platform dynamics
  • Group work
  • Plenary discussion
Day 2
  • Ecosystem diversity
  • Digital infrastructure dynamics
  • Rights-based digital infrastructures
  • Group work
  • Plenary discussion
Day 3
  • Presentations of the short individual essays
  • Discussion synthesising the lessons learnt through the course

Organizer: Peter A. Nielsen,

Lecturer: Carsten Sørensen, London School of Economics and Political Science 

ECTS: 2.0

In-Person Part
Time: 24-25 November 2022
Place: Aalborg AAU

Online Part
Time: 5 December 2022
Place: Zoom

Number of seats: 20

Deadline: 10 November 2022

BIO: Carsten Sørensen is Reader (Associate Professor) in Digital Innovation within Department of Management at The London School of Economics and Political Science ( He holds a BSc. in mathematics, an MSc in computer science and a Ph.D. in information systems from Aalborg University, Denmark. Carsten has, since the 1980s, researched digital innovation, for example, innovating the digital enterprise through mobile technology (, and the innovation dynamics of mobile infrastructures and -platforms ( He developed LSEs first blockchain course, an online course on cryptocurrency disruption, and has been the leading academic securing LSE representation on Hedera’s Governing Council ( Carsten has published widely within Information Systems since 1989, for example, in MISQ, ISR, JMIS, ISJ, JIT, Information & Organization, The Information Society, Computer Supported Cooperative Work, and Scandinavian Journal of Information Systems. This body of work has been cited over 8,900 times with a h-index of 39 ( Carsten also has extensive experience managing national, EU, and industry research projects with research grants totalling over £3 million. He has for a number of years been engaged in assisting and assessing digital start-ups. He has§ for 25 years been actively engaged in academic consultant and executive education with a broad range of organisations – IMF, Microsoft, Google, PA Consulting, Huawei, Orange, Vodafone, and Intel, to name just a few.

Important information concerning PhD courses:
We have over some time experienced problems with no-show for both project and general courses. It has now reached a point where we are forced to take action. Therefore, the Doctoral School has decided to introduce a no-show fee of DKK 3.000 for each course where the student does not show up. Cancellations are accepted no later than 2 weeks before start of the course. Registered illness is of course an acceptable reason for not showing up on those days. Furthermore, all courses open for registration approximately four months before start. This can hopefully also provide new students a chance to register for courses during the year. 
We look forward to your registrations.